IRI2038 Futures Study: A Journey into the Future of R&D Management

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Description

As part of the Industrial Research Institute’s 75th Anniversary Celebration, it commissioned the IRI2038 Futures Study, a futures initiative designed to answer the following question: How will possible future developments and events impact the art and science of research and technology management over the next 25 years?

After examining hundreds of trends, weak signals, and implications, the Futures Study was able to create four plausible, yet provocative scenarios about the future of R&D and innovation management:
• Africa Leapfrogs Developed Countries
• Everything’s In Beta
• Three Roads to Innovation
• Death of Distance vs. Megacities

These scenarios are not predictions of the future. They are tools to enable practitioners to better prepare for the real future as it unveils itself. The more a particular theme appears across all four scenarios, the more likely it is that it will come to fruition. Key themes to watch include: the death of IP, augmented humans, the era of women, and the end of the time zone problem.

Presentation of this study includes the process of doing a foresights study of this size, a description of each of the scenarios, and key trends that R&D practitioners need to consider. Breakout sessions can include a backcasting exercise, a great way to bring the scenarios to life and get people thinking about how they can actually apply the themes touched on in the study.

Contributors

  • Daniel A. Abramowicz, Chief Technology Officer, Crown Holdings, Inc.

    Dan Abramowicz is responsible for innovation and technology development across Crown’s business platforms. These efforts include new product design, new process development, product and process improvements, material developments, engineering, process monitoring, database management, standard setting and cost reductions across the breadth of Crown’s packaging products (food cans and ends; beverage cans and ends; aerosol containers; metal vacuum closures; specialty packaging; and packaging equipment). In addition, Dr. Abramowicz heads Crown’s Environment, Health and Safety Organization and Crown’s Sustainability Initiative.

    Before joining Crown, Dr. Abramowicz was a Technical Director in GE’s Global Research Center. In this leadership role he was responsible for technology development across GE’s Industrial and Consumer Businesses, including Appliances, Lighting, Transportation Systems, Industrial Control Systems and Electrical Distribution & Control. In an earlier role with GE, Dr. Abramowicz headed GE’s Environmental Laboratory, utilizing chemical, biological and physical methods to develop innovative remediation and pollution prevention systems, as well as initiatives in green product design.

    Dr. Abramowicz received his B.S. degree in Chemistry and his B.A. degree in Mathematics and Computer Science from St. Francis University and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Physical Chemistry from Princeton University. During his time with GE, he was also an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Biology at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Dr. Abramowicz is an active volunteer for non-profit organizations and he is currently serving in several leadership roles with such organizations, including Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees at Salus University, Board of Directors for the Industrial Research Institute, Chair of the Executive Corporate Committee of The Franklin Institute (a renowned science museum), and Chair of The President’s Advisory Board of Conwell-Egan Catholic High School. Dr. Abramowicz is also a current member and past-Chair of the Advisory Board of the Clemson University’s Department of Packaging and past-President of the Board of Governors of the Association of Princeton Graduate Alumni.

    Dr. Abramowicz has recently been recognized with two honors for alumni, being elected to the Andrew Fleming West Society of Princeton University and with St. Francis University’s Distinguished Alumnus Award in Science.

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